What's It Like...

Sponsored by CRLT and Rackham, this series spotlights faculty worklife at different kinds of colleges and universities to help you explore career possibilities.

What’s It Like to Work at a Liberal Arts College?

Interested in teaching at a liberal arts college? A 2014 faculty panel from liberal arts colleges discussed job search strategies and faculty worklife. In addition, participants learned about the Mellon Postdoctoral Fellowships at Oberlin and Kalamazoo Colleges for University of Michigan Ph.D.s.

Panelists:
  • Dr. Daniel Birchok, Visiting Assistant Professor of Religion, Oberlin College
  • Dr. Vanessa McCaffrey, Associate Professor of Chemistry, Albion College
  • Dr. Andrew Mozina, Professor of English, Kalamazoo College
  • Dr. Annemarie Sammartino, Associate Professor of History, Oberlin College

 

What's It Like to Be a Teaching Postdoc?

Many PhDs begin their faculty careers with a postdoctoral fellowship that allows them to teach for one or two years at a small college. This video from a 2013 PFF session features panelists with teaching postdoc experience discussing opportunities, challenges, and strategies for success in such a position. This video will be especially informative for participants interested in learning about faculty worklife at liberal arts colleges.
 
Panelists:
  • Laura Schram, Assistant Director, CRLT (Facilitator)
  • Melanie Boyd, Assistant Dean of Student Affairs, Yale University
  • Rebecca Fulop, Lecturer in Musicology, U-M
  • Christopher Matthews, LSA Academic Advisor, U-M 
 

 

What's It Like to Teach at a Community College?

About a third of full-time and two-thirds of part-time faculty teach at community colleges. What’s it like to teach at a two-year institution? This 2013 panel featured community college faculty who discuss their work portfolios and career experiences. Additional resources about life at community colleges are included.
 
Panelists:
  • Laura Schram, Assistant Director, CRLT (Facilitator)
  • James Egan, Dean of Distance Learning and Professor of Mathematics, Washtenaw Community College
  • Brooke Thomas Allen, Professor of Political Science, Macomb Community College
  • Camille Ziolek, Chair and Professor of English, Oakland Community College, Orchard Ridge

What’s It Like to Pursue an Alternative Academic Career in STEM?

Interested in exploring career paths beyond the professoriate? This 2013 panel featured scholars from a variety of STEM backgrounds who have put their doctoral-level training to use in the academy in administrative, research or staff careers, many of which involve a faculty appointment or teaching. The panel highlight ed opportunities in a range of careers and provide strategies to prepare for alternative academic career paths.

Panelists:

  • Dr. Manja Holland, Research Programs Officer, Graham Environmental Sustainability Institute, U-M
  • Dr. Peggy Liggit, Director, Faculty Development Center, Eastern Michigan University
  • Dr. Bruno Vanzieleghem, Assistant Director of Operations, University of Michigan Energy Institute

 

What’s It Like to Pursue an Alternative Academic Career in the Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences?

Interested in exploring career paths beyond the professoriate? This 2013 panel featured scholars from the humanities, arts, and social sciences who have put their doctoral-level training to use in the academy in administrative, research or staff careers, many of which involve a faculty appointment or teaching. The panel highlight ed opportunities in a range of careers and provide strategies to prepare for alternative academic career paths.

Panelists:

  • Dr. Henry Dyson, Senior Advisor and Scholarship Coordinator, LS&A Honors Program, U-M
  • Dr. Liliana Milkova, Curator of Academic Programs, Oberlin College
  • Dr. Jennifer Young Yim, Director, Global Scholars Program, U-M

 

 

What’s It Like To Be a Postdoctoral Scholar?

Thinking about a postdoc after graduation? This interdisciplinary panel from the 2012 PFF conference offered strategies for getting a postdoctoral position, as well as working productively at one. Additional resources on finding and being successful at postdoctoral positions are also available.

Panelists:

  • Jennifer Emery-Peck, Visiting Professor/Postdoctoral Fellow in English, Oberlin College
  • Donald Lopez, Chair of the Michigan Society of Fellows; Department Chair and A.E. Link Distinguished University Professor of Buddhist Studies, Asian Languages and Cultures, U-M
  • Luanna Prevost, Postdoctoral Research Associate, Center for Engineering Education Research (CEER), Michigan State University
  • Michele Swanson, Director, Office of Postdoctoral Studies, Medical School, U-M; Professor, Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Medical School, U-M
  • Co-moderated by Mary Wright, Director of Assessment and Associate Research Scientist, CRLT and Kris Gorman, Postdoctoral Research Associate, CRLT

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